N – NIGHTMARE
JayPrakash Uncle woke up with a start from a deep sleep of the innocent, as beside him The Aunt let out a loud gasp and sat up suddenly. The Uncle switched on the bed-lamp and looked at his wife.
The Aunt was shivering, beads of perspiration shining on her forehead and on the tip of her nose. Her eyes were glazed and her breath was fast and furious.
The Uncle nodded his head with understanding.
“Bad dream?” he asked sympathetically.
The Aunt nodded wiping the sweat off her forehead with the end of her sari.
“Take a deep breath and relax,” advised The Uncle, handing the bottle of water to her. “Here, drink some water.”
The Aunt took a swig of refreshing water and sighed deeply.
“Let me guess.” said The Uncle. “You dreamt that you lost your way in a strange foreign place?”
The Aunt shook her head.
“Then …… you lost the children at the local fair?”
“No ……… ”
“You failed in an exam?”
“Tsk Tsk.” said The Aunt. “These are just silly dreams.”she said. “I just had a NIGHTMARE!”
The Uncle waited.
“My worst Nightmare!” continued The Aunt. “Apparently I’ve got this Kitty party today … no …. tomorrow….oh…whatever…… aaaaand I don’t have a thing to wear!!!”
The Uncle gaped at his wife, took a long breath, let it out and then asked “That’s your – NIGHTMARE?”
“Wait.” said The Uncle. “Let’s get this clear. You’ve just woken me up at 4.00 am because you dreamed you had nothing to wear ? To a Kitty party?”
She nodded again. “It’s every woman’s worst NIGHTMARE…… having nothing to wear!!”
She gave a start. “Did you say it’s 4 o’clock? Oh no….” she wailed. “Do you know early morning dreams can come true?” She threw aside the bed clothes, jumped out of bed and switched on the light.
“What are you doing?” asked The Uncle.
“I’m checking my wardrobe.”
“Now??? No…. please. Go back to bed and let me also sleep.”
But The Aunt seemed not to hear. She pulled the doors of her wardrobe open. And what seemed to be half of its contents tumbled out on her in a rush – like the waters of a dam when the sluice gates are opened. The Aunt swayed with the onslaught, lost balance and sat down heavily on the floor. The Uncle heaved her up saying, “There…. see… it’s just a dream. You have so much stuff. Your own wardrobe is overflowing and remember some of your clothes are in mine too.”
“Yes it is…” agreed The Aunt. “But I still have nothing to wear!!”
The Uncle looked at her and held up the garments one by one.
The Aunt shook her head.
“That one doesn’t fit me. And no, I haven’t grown fat. The laundry man said it shrank!!”
“This green one – Mrs Rao has same to same and it would be disastrous if we happened to wear it at the same time!”
“And this one – really I can’t remember why I even bought it. It’s so ugly.”
“And that pink one – I wore it at the kitty three months ago. And Mrs Iyer is sure to remember and remind everyone else too!!”
“And these are all out of fashion….! So see. I have nothing to wear!!”
“You wouldn’t understand!!” she added. And The Uncle didn’t.
It was his turn to sweat. He wiped his forehead with the end of his lungi and announced, “This is a NIGHTMARE and I’m the one having it!”
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This is the 14th in the series –The Adventures of The JP Family as part of the A to Z Blog Challenge 2019.
Alphabet illustration – Sudarshan Rao.